June 10, 2023


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Gastown fire victims set to move into vacant Downtown Eastside hotel Tuesday

Citizens will be moved into a 71-room hotel at 303 Columbia St., which was bought by Atira Residence Administration in February

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Just after a 7 days of sleeping on cots in a short term shelter, tenants displaced by the Winters Hotel fire are established to go into a new rooming home Tuesday.

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The recent delay in relocating the tenants — most of whom misplaced all of their possessions in the blaze — was brought about by a sprinkler program problem in the freshly designated social housing, a vacant Downtown Eastside lodge termed The Columbia.

The upkeep function is nearing completion, mentioned Janice Abbott, CEO of Atira House Management, which for the previous 7 several years leased solitary-occupancy rooms from Winters’ non-public owner.

“Things are heading effectively. We are not anticipating any changes to Tuesday’s go-in date.”

Atira, which purchased the 71-place resort at 303 Columbia St. working with funding from Vancity Credit score Union in February, selected to adapt its prepare for the developing just after dozens of Winters’ tenants had been rendered homeless by Monday’s devastating fireplace.

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The home is currently being provided a new name, Tawow, which is a Cree term this means “there’s usually room” as Winters’ tenants get priority of its rooms, Abbott explained.

Some tenants will need to be place up in non permanent housing owned by the town prior to far more of the rooms are built completely ready in the next week or two.

Atira team are at the moment cleaning in preparation for the go in. Most of the rooms have beds, as it previously operated as a hostel.

The Vancouver Fire Division is even now investigating the fireplace that displaced extra than 150 residents in between the Winters Hotel and the adjacent Gastown Resort, which is expected to see tenants return once h2o and smoke damage is mitigated by dehumidifiers and air filtration programs.

Fireplace Main Karen Fry claimed arson has not been ruled out as a lead to.

The fireplace broke out in a area on the second ground of the Winters Lodge and led to 6 victims remaining addressed in clinic, such as 1 who sustained injuries immediately after jumping from an higher-flooring window.

When asked if the hearth will prompt a review of sprinklers and alarms in govt-funded minimal-hire resorts, B.C. Housing reported alterations to fireplace security options will be created if “deemed necessary” by the fireplace department’s investigation.

— With information from Lori Culbert

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